Running older programs (incl XP 32-bit) with Vista 64-bit

By MGedlinske ·
I'm trying to help my Mom and Dad (in their 80s) with a computer problem. When their old PC died, they went to a "big box" store and were sold a PC. As they tried to install their old software (for example an old Broderbund Create-a-card program), they kept getting messages about "incompatibility with a 64-bit operating system". They were sold a 64-bit HP system, with Vista Home Premium SP1. And they're not happy that their old software won't load. (I can't believe the "experts" at the store did this to them).

So, what are my options? Should I try to return the 64-bit system (even though it's been a couple of months)? Or would it help to install a 32-bit version of XP on their system, and try to load the older programs that way (if that's even possible)?

With the 64-bit operating system, won't I continue to run into compatibility problems as they try to load their older software (such as Office 97)?

Any thoughts would help me. Thanks!

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Old software

by p.j.hutchison In reply to Running older programs (i ...

I think it was a mistake to see them a 64 bit computer. See store about what options they have esp. changing the OS to 32bit Vista.

How old is the software anyway? They may still have issues anyway unless they update their software as well.

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by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Running older programs (i ...
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Vista has a lot of Known Issues with Backward Compatibility

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Running older programs (i ...

And that is just the 32 Bit version the 64 Bit Version is if anything even worse. For exactly the same reason that the 64 Bit version of XP never sold in any reasonable amounts no drivers or software to speak of.

As to what you can do you can upgrade to XP but only if you can find drivers for all of the hardware. If there is any hardware you can not find drivers for it probably will not work with XP. Now provided that their old hardware, software worked with XP it shouldn't be a problem but if they had 98SE or 2000 loaded then it may be a differed story.

XP had exactly the same backward compatibility issues as Vista has and there where many bits of Hardware like Printers & Scanners as well as software that just didn't work with it.


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well a year later!

by Roe5685 In reply to Running older programs (i ...

did you get the free microsoft virtual machine installer? use that to load an old dos program like windows 3.1, windows 95 or windows 98 onto the 64 bit system. say win 98 as the guest and the 64 bit as the host. if you are savy you can even use xp but will have to fiddle with autoexec.nt and config.nt.
we successfully run all sorts of older dos programs this way. you can leave the files on the 64 bit machine and access them through net work connection from the guest system.
good luck if you have not already done this!

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